Thursday of the Fourth Week in Ordinary Time
Letters to the Hebrews 12:18-19, 21-24, Psalm 48:2-3ab, 3cd-4, 9-11, & Mark 6:7-13
Today’s Gospel narrative relates how Jesus sends His Twelve apostles out two by two, giving them authority over unclean spirits. In our time, we would call this mission “on-the-job training.” Have you ever considered why He sent them out in pairs? The reason is credibility. In Judaism, there is a need for two witnesses to attest to the truth of a deed that has been accomplished. Our Lord commands them to do the works that He does, that is, to cast out evil spirits, heal, and speak the Word of God. Additionally, he commands them to take nothing for their journey except a staff; they take no food, no bag, and no money in their belts. They are to wear sandals and not put on two tunics.
Today’s missionaries fly on planes and drive cars. They may have support staff, and they are probably not wearing sandals. When they reach their destinations, they might stay in a hotel and have every type of modern communication device to assist them in their ministry.
Our Lord asks us not to take anything with us when we are on our own missions. This confers on us the spirit of the mission, which is one of witness and has the essence of having abandoned everything to be a living embodiment of Christ and what He lived for. Finally, the missionary should always remember the following guideline that never changes: to trust in God more than in oneself and proclaim God alone in his or her efforts to bring the healing Words of Jesus to the world.
Question of the Day: Will you go where Jesus sends you?
Prayer: Lord, we pray that our deprivation, small or large, will both lead us to You and make us more available to other people. Amen.